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“Improved Hotel; Beach Needs Fixed”

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Discovery Bay by Rex Resorts
Ranked #4 of 4 Hotels in Holetown
Wales,UK
Level 3 Contributor
23 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 47 helpful votes
“Improved Hotel; Beach Needs Fixed”
Reviewed 1 February 2014

We have just returned from 2 wonderful weeks (mid January) all inclusive, garden room, at Discovery Bay. This was our 2nd visit, (same period last year) . As us, this hotel sees many repeat guests, year on year. Given our world-wide travel experience it is without doubt the friendliest hotel (both guests & staff) we have ever visited. We have travelled many times to the Caribbean Islands and have come to realise the value for money offered by Rex Resorts. This hotel is no exception, located in Holetown, & well positioned between the much higher cost Sandpiper and Mango Bay hotels. Big change this year has seen the new appointment of a 'highly visible' and committed GM; Mr Brian Carter who now listens to any complaints and gets things done. Since last year the hotel has also had a complete revamp of the pool area, with high quality sun beds and parasols added. Just be careful NOT to dive into the pool, since, although large it is essentially too shallow @ 4 ft deep for adult use. Also, the southern end of the grounds has upgraded day-bar and dining areas. Breakfast, is still in my opinion the best meal of the day. Lunch quality has been greatly improved since last year. Evening Dinner can still be a hit and miss; but here again, credit to Mr Carter, complaints by several guests following one particular Saturday evening 'unsatisfactory' meal; yielded a tremendous improvement for the remainder of the holiday. My advice..Don't come to the Caribbean if you dislike chicken or fresh fish!
The biggest disappointment for us, this year has been the beach. It's an absolute given for any beach front hotel in Barbados that soft sand of top quality is provided by the natural environment. This beach was first class last year. The rework to extend the beach and provide more protection for the front sea facing rooms has left a hard platform of very small sharp stone pebbles, which are painful on the bare feet. I guess the upgrade to the poolside somewhat compensates, but who comes to the west coast of Barbados to sit at a pool positioned 100 yards back from the sea. Conditions for our return would be based on ( the hope) that occasional heavy seas and erosion would get the beach back to that wonderful soft sand prevalent in the west coast of Barbados. I would also hope, the hotel maintains it's competitive edge, providing that excellent value for money which brings back the repeat guests year on year.
A word of caution for anyone who has not visited Barbados before. Bus services to & from the hotel to Bridgetown & Speightstown are excellent, but my advice would be to avoid the 'Yellow' buses. These are privately owned, driven by young drivers, have continuous very loud music, and have been witnessed to race each other to the next bus station for first option on passenger pick-up. Use only the government controlled 'Blue' buses to increase your probability of staying alive. A bad accident involving a yellow bus occurred during our stay. People in our hotel witnessed use of mobile-phone-texting by their yellow-bus driver and described the experience as downright dangerous driving. I don't understand why the Barbados government does not do something to fix this; before a real serious accident involving life occurs.

Room Tip: Unless you are going to spend lots of time in your room, looking out to sea... Garden rooms, South f...
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  • Stayed January 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Flamingo22
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Brian C, General Manager at Discovery Bay by Rex Resorts, responded to this review, 3 February 2014
Thank you for taking the time to write this review.
We are very proud that we have a tremendous repeat following.

During closure our pool deck was totally refurbished, adding a beach bar, snack kitchen
along with high quality sun loungers, umbrellas and day beds.

We have recently placed a lot of emphasis on the variety and consistency of our meals.
Using the freshness of local ingredients to ensure excellent quality with a Caribbean touch.

As you correctly pointed out the Government embarked on a beach project last year to protect and enhance the beach. The new sand that was brought in has some coarse shale
which over time the sea will wash allowing the finer sand to cover the beach. So I am sure you will see a vast improvement next year.

Rex has every intention of maintaining its “value for money” policy, which keeps our repeaters coming back and encourages new guests to experience Discovery by Rex Resorts.

I agree that the yellow buses can be a bit reckless at times so it is advisable to take the Government blue busses which travel on similar routes to the yellow buses.

It was a pleasure welcoming you back this year and I look forward to doing the same next year.

Sincerely,
Brian Carter
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English first
Ipswich, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
40 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed 29 January 2014

my husband and i stayed at discovery bay for 2 weeks over xmas, the hotel is tired looking but clean.The food we found boring and much the same each day.Much of the holiday we did not have hot water or bath or beach towels which was very inconvenient and i think the hotels saving grace was the total friendliness of the staff and fellow guests which made our holiday.Also the delightful and placid beach bed man(malcom-lanky) who was always on hand to do what he could to help. The locals also very friendly.We noticed that lots of the guests regularly stay here every xmas and longer, seems like a huge family reunion! My husband liked the manager (brian) as he appeared to share his fishing interests and even gave him a 'spinner' to help with fishing and he then caught several fish and gave a few to malcom the beach bed man. All in all we had a good time and made lots of friends and left with fond memories.

  • Stayed December 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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Helpful?
1 Thank 57andgrumpy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Brian C, General Manager at Discovery Bay by Rex Resorts, responded to this review, 30 January 2014
Thank you for taking the time to post this review.
I am disappointed that the hotel looked tired; we do our best to keep it looking as fresh looking as possible. We have changed the menus to add more variety; also the kitchen in the beach bar is now functioning so we can offer burgers and light snacks. In the evening we have added a Caribbean Night and a Fishermen’s Grill at the beach bar with live entertainment and also increased the variety of the nightly dinner menus.
I am very sorry about the hot water and towel issues that you experienced. All of boilers are now working and we have increased the amount of towels, so we now have lots of hot water and towels.
Thank you for your kind comments on the friendliness of out staff and guests which are considered the greatest assets we have.
I am very pleased that you liked our beautiful beach and of course the beach bed man Lanky who has been at the hotel forever.
We do have a tremendous repeat guest following who we regard as family since they return every year and usually in the same month which creates a great reunion.
I am glad the fishing lure did its job, I have been very successful in the past using a similar lure and I am sure Lanky enjoyed the fresh fish.

Thank you so much for staying with us, I am happy that you had an enjoyable time with fond memories.
I hope I will have the pleasure of welcoming you back in the future.

Sincerely,
Brian Carter
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Derby, United Kingdom
1 review
Reviewed 29 January 2014

We stayed at the hotel over the new year. During our stay we were burgled in our room which was on the lower ground beach front. The thieves entered our room and took my handbag and its contents, whilst we were asleep in the room.

The manager, staff and local police were very helpful.

On our return we wrote and e mailed the head office and the manager and WE STILL HAVE HAD NO ACKNOWLEDEGEMENT OR REPLY.

Following the incident, I found it very hard to sleep and it did ruin the remaining days of our holiday

Many things about the holiday (Food ) was appalling but the location is great.

But we feel let down and hope the security at the hotel has been changed and re in forced.

  • Stayed December 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Location
Helpful?
Thank Gail559
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Brian C, General Manager at Discovery Bay by Rex Resorts, responded to this review, 30 January 2014
I am truly sorry that you experienced a burglary while staying with us.
We have strengthened our security team and have had no other similar incidents.

I deeply regret that this caused you not to sleep and hope that time will heal this.

The menus have been changed to reflect more varied dishes and we have placed a better quality control system in place.

I can understand that you felt let down; we ourselves felt extremely bad that this has happened and offered as much support as we could to ease the anxiety of the situation.

Again, let me apologize for this unfortunate incident which we have investigated very thoroughly and as mentioned before the security at the hotel has been strengthened to avoid any similar incidents.

Thank you for staying with us and hopefully in the future we will have the pleasure of welcoming you back.

Sincerely,
Brian Carter
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Travellers are raving about these Holetown hotels

Cardiff
Level 5 Contributor
55 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 49 helpful votes
Reviewed 15 January 2014

I take all reviews on trip advisor with a massive pinch of salt and know that people expect 5 star hotels at 3 star prices but this is NOT a 3 star hotel!

We stayed at the hotel for 2 weeks in December 2013. We had emailed the hotel ahead of our holiday to ask for two rooms next to each other or at least on the same floor, upon arrival this had not been sorted and we had to wait a day or 2 for this to be rectified.

Upon arrival at the hotel I asked where the ammenitys listed on the website were - eg the tennis courts and spa. These havent been built yet, they need to be honest their website! Also the pool is so small I thought it was the childrens pool!! I cannot see what "reburb" has been done to the hotel as it seemed really dated although that may just be the "colonial decor".

The choice of food was very very poor. Every night for dinner there was 5 hot plates to choose from and I could always guess what they were going to be - 1 rice, 1 potato, 1 mixed vegetables, 1 fish and 1 chicken or beef. Very limited especially if your a vegetarian like me who lived off potatos and vegetables for 2 weeks.

We had been staying at the hotel for 3 nights when the manager approached myself & my family in the bar infront of all the other guests to advise us we werent all inclusive, we were on a basic package and had been eating and drinking "for free" for a few nights but would have to pay for everything from now on. We were infact all inclusive and had to retrieve paper work from our hotel room to prove this!!! Our apology - some stale cakes sent up to the room from lunch time. I think this was worthy of a face to face apology.

During our first week at the hotel my bathroom door locked itself and we had to get a maintenance man to the room to fix it, the receptionist tells you to wait in your room whilst they are fixing things so that took 2 hours (!!) During our stay my safe also broke (another 2 hours spent in my bedroom) and the extractor fan on the balcony exploded releasing hundreds of little polystyrene balls onto the balcony (another 2 to fix that)

The wifi in the hotel almost never works and when you bring this up with the management they tell you that the internet IS working and there must be a problem with your device (I was trying to connect from 3 different devices) Several people approached them with the same problem and they told them all the same thing!

The waitresses/bar staff are LOVELY - cannot do enough for you but the management/receptionists are an absolute DISGRACE and brush any problems under the carpet! nothing is ever their fault.

There is a pack in your bedroom which advises the bar at rex resorts closes at 2AM. The bar closes at 11pm and by 10:30pm the bar staff have cleared most of the drinks from behind the bar so you have to ask them to fetch them back! Also they run out of clean glasses a few nights and we could only drink bottled drinks from the bar until these had been cleaned!

Discovery Bay is like an old peoples home, given that the bar shuts at 11 there is nothing to do at the hotel after 11pm and you have to go out. There are a FEW bars to the right of the hotel but not alot. On my first visit to Barbados I stayed near St Lawrence Gap and this was much more lively. I felt very sorry for any children staying at the hotel because they all looked so bored. I would not consider staying at this hotel if you are under 60.

I stay at all inclusive hotels once, maybe twice a year and this is the WORST all inclusive hotel I have ever stayed at. I would not go back to this hotel if you paid me.

But of course Barbados is beautiful! I highly recommend the monkey sanctuary, swimming with turtles, animal flower cave, harrisons cave, renting a car and a lovely little karaoke bar just to the right of the gates of the hotel on a sunday night where all the locals sing karaoke :)

  • Stayed December 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
5 Thank JetSetter25Cardiff
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Brian C, General Manager at Discovery Bay by Rex Resorts, responded to this review, 21 January 2014
Thank you for choosing our resort for your recent stay. Your stay did get off on the wrong foot as we did not receive your email for adjacent rooms and due to high occupancies we could not accommodate your request on arrival.

We are a little confused by your comment regards our website, as we do not promote tennis or a spa facility at the resort. There is a therapist that provides massages on the beach - the resort did have tennis courts on the other side of the coast road but we closed those some years ago as they were not used often and we felt that crossing the road was not safe or convenient for our guests.

Our recent refurbishment included building a new beach bar and kitchen, upgrading the floors from ceramic tiles to rich hardwood (Purple Hart), re-tiling the entire pool deck and adding new day beds and high quality sun loungers with padded cushions. We have photos of our pool and beach on our website and will be adding further photography soon to show new furniture and the bar and restaurant.

We are sincerely regret that we got your dining plan information wrong on and deeply apologize for the inconvenience this cause. As the hotel operates on all-inclusive basis only (traditional room only plan is no longer available), this will never confusion will never occur again. We do offer a variation in our daily menus but will see what more can be done to improve the variety and selection.

Our room directories will be updated to indicate correct Lobby bar closing time to 11pm - we find that most guests return to their rooms at that time or prefer to enjoy the vibrant night life on offer on 1st street in Holetown, a short walk away. Holetown and the West Coast of Barbados is different to Lawrence Gap and Christ Church.

Each arrival room is inspected before guest check in, however from time to time issues unexpectedly pop up and we do our best to rectify these as quickly as possible. However we have introduced a more rigorous programme to minimize these occurrences. Our Free Wi-Fi internet access was problematic for a short while which we sourced to a faulty router that has been replaced, so it now works efficiently.

In summation we are very sorry that we did not meet your expectations and will be addressing points so that we may offer a comfortable and relaxing holiday to all of our guests.

Sincerely,
Brian Carter
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London, United Kingdom
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 January 2014

We have been going to this hotel for many years, always around New Year. This last year there was a big refurbishment programme, and we got quite excited that some of the problem areas had now been fixed. The beach has indeed been extended very successfully, and the beach/garden restaurant has also been extended quite nicely. Sadly there are still a number of details which need attending too. The bathrooms have always been poor, but this year when we arrived we were very pleased to see a new basin unit in the bathroom.....sadly the bathroom still needed painting, and some shelves and towel rails need installing! The bar advertises mojito's but never has any mint....or a lemon squeezer. If you ask for a bajan lemonade, which is made from fresh limes, you are given a mix of cordials and syrup! Whilst we were there, there were several burglaries in the hotel rooms, which has never happened in previous years, but the hotel manager did not even put a note under guests doors to advise them about what was being done to increase security etc.
This hotel is in such a brilliant location and many of the guests return year after year, but like us, they also feel disappointed that the hotel is not better managed.

Room Tip: Get a seafront room, and then you can forget all the little "niggles" and enjoy the wonder...
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  • Stayed January 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Mary Anne P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Brian C, General Manager at Discovery Bay by Rex Resorts, responded to this review, 15 January 2014
Thank you for your kind comments on our extended beach and new Beach Bar.

Our bathrooms have been upgraded, with new vanities and bath tubs.
But I am disappointed that the paint job was not up to standard. I will have the bathrooms examined to ensure that they are up to standard and see if shelves and a towel rail can be fitted.

I apologize for running out of mint and not making a true “Baja” lemonade. I will speak with our team and have this fixed.

We did experience an isolated case of burglary which we have thoroughly investigated. We take the comfort and security of our guests very seriously. And to this end we have strengthened our security to prevent a similar occurrence.

As you mentioned our location is brilliant, with a spacious beach and close to shops and restaurants.

I am disappointed that you found our hotel was not better managed. We strive to provide friendly and efficient service. I will discuss this with the Management team and put measures in place to rectify this.

Thank you for returning to Discovery Bay by Rex Resorts and I look forward to welcoming you back again.

Sincerely,
Brian Carter
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Edinburgh, United Kingdom
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 January 2014

This was our first time to this hotel and what a pleasant surprise it was. Whilst only a three star the service and food in this hotel and definitely in excess of this, making it a destination you would definitely want to come back to. Location is fabulous allowing you to take long walks left or right from the beach right in front of the hotel with a lovely part of the beach to swim in with lots of activities available if you have the energy. The hotel is peaceful and restful making sure your stay is a relaxing one. This is our 5th time to Barbados and we genuinely were not ready to go home this time. If you appreciate good food (although limited choice, but this was never an issue for us) and friendly and efficient service from staff that genuinely care that you have a nice time, this is the place to go.

Room Tip: We stayed in top floor sea view, this was only 2nd floor therefore no real issues with lots of stair...
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  • Stayed January 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank C C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Brian C, General Manager at Discovery Bay by Rex Resorts, responded to this review, 15 January 2014
We are delighted that you had an enjoyable stay at Discovery Bay; it was our pleasure to look after you.
As you have mentioned, our location is fabulous, with a lovely spacious beach. Close by are shops, a supermarket, banks and many restaurants.

Your comments on our good food are greatly appreciated, we always use fresh local produce as much as we can and are spoilt with a good supply of fresh fish.

I will be sure to inform the team that you found our service to be friendly and efficient, our aim is to exceed our guest’s expectations and I am glad that we have been successful.

Thank you for choosing Discovery Bay by Rex Resorts for your 5th visit to Barbados and we look forward to welcoming you again.

Sincerely,
Brian Carter
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Glace Bay, Canada
Level 1 Contributor
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 January 2014

My cousin & I visited here for two weeks in November, Older hotel but was lovely!!! Brian Carter & all the staff there were awesome....couldn't do enough for us....thanks guys for the rum cream!!!! Mr. Carter is very "hands on" always checking to make sure everything is going well or if we needed anything. Work was still going on at the beach...but they made sure we did have access to a beach just minutes away. Met some wonderful people from England who were staying there as well....they were repeat visitors....having visited this hotel many times.The food was great as well as the service!!!!!would definitely go again...and would recommend it!!!!!

  • Stayed November 2013, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Daizee2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Brian C, General Manager at Discovery Bay by Rex Resorts, responded to this review, 6 January 2014
Thank you very much for your kind compliments.
We are glad that you enjoyed the rum cream and of course your stay with us.

It was a pleasure having you and look forward to welcoming you back in the near future.
Sincerely,

Brian Carter
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Additional Information about Discovery Bay by Rex Resorts

Property: Discovery Bay by Rex Resorts
Address: St. James Beach, Holetown, Barbados
Region: Caribbean > Barbados > Saint James Parish > Holetown
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #4 of 4 Hotels in Holetown
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:3 star — Discovery Bay by Rex Resorts 3*
Number of rooms: 85
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A unique hotel situated on St James Beach, the Discovery Bay consists of charming plantation-style houses set in beautiful landscaped gardens. Located on the fashionable West coast, days at this resort are centred around the beach and the pool, the upscale Limegrove shopping mall and nightlife on Holetown's first street a short walk away. The resort is all-inclusive and family friendly, popular with couples also. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Discovery Bay By Rex Hotel Saint James
Discovery Bay Barbados
Discovery Bay Hotel Barbados
Discovery Bay By Rex Resorts Barbados/Holetown

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